On the Nice List

There’s only a few things in this world that really grind my gears:

Wet socks

Not grabbing a towel before jumping into the shower

Mean people

And the first two things always happen in the same place, so at least I know to expect them.

But mean people? No, they come out of nowhere. Stamping their feet, rolling their eyes, acting like they’ve never met you before, even when you’ve addressed them from across the street (wait, those aren’t mean people. Those are just strangers. Nevermind.)

And somehow, mean people confuse niceness with weakness. As if kindness and compassion aren’t the hardest things to do when you’ve spent all day fuming at the “public” and wanting to bite everyone’s heads off, but resisting this temptationI mean, talk about earning a gold star. Being nice takes courage.

And assuredly, this is how I perceive the world. One kind act can erase 1,000 evil deeds.

So, tell me why I totally dodged a super nice cashier at Target today.

That’s right. I totally went in another lane because he was there. I know him. I’ve been in his lane before. And he is so nice. He comments appreciatively on your purchases and helps you with that stupid credit card chip technology. I once had to wait in his line while he finished having a really pleasant conversation with the person in front of me. Like, if he were a candy, well, he’d be all of them because he is just that sweet.

And I purposely avoided him. Why? Maybe because I just wanted to check out without making polite conversation. Maybe it was because I saw that another lane was moving faster?

But, no. That wasn’t it at all. It’s because he’s too nice. Which shouldn’t be a bad thing, ever. But suddenly, it is.

Do you know why? Because people are so rarely nice that I’m not sure I know what to do with it. I’m all, what’s your endgame? I know what you’re trying to do and it won’t work. And they’re all, “I was just trying to give you a recipe for spinach dip.” And I’m like, Oh, really? Do I look fat? Do you want me to eat healthier by eating spinach? Well, joke’s on you! Spinach dip isn’t really that healthy!

And the worst part is that I know it sounds crazy. But it’s true. Especially as a woman. I’m always just assuming that nice people are trying to put me in the back of their white van. And I love my dad, but he’s not Liam Neeson (even though he thinks he is), and he isn’t going to be able to get me back from the black market that they sell me to.

And truly,  I don’t know how to fix this avoidance of nice people in order to keep myself alive. I mean, it begs the questions: Should the world be more nice so I get used to it? Or should we stop being so suspicious of each other? Is being too nice a bad thing at the end of the day?

I’m not sure, but I wished I lived in a place where these weren’t actual questions.

I do hope that guy knows that he’s really good at his job, though. So good, it makes me uncomfortable.


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